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22831RE: [scrumdevelopment] Team building activities

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  • Roy Morien
    Aug 4, 2007
      Nothing builds a team as a team better than mutual respect for the abilities of other members of the team, and a sense of common purpose, and common achievement. Sharing the same vision, sharing the respect and praise and sense of achievement by the team. These are what builds team spirit ... esprit de corps ...
      What destroys teams is where the 'management' shows favour, praises certain people at the expense of others (and where the praise is seen as being because of the favouritism, not the recipients actual ability), fails to recognise and acknowledge individual endeavour ... including contribution to the harmony of the team. So much is dependant on the behaviour and attitude of the project leader (or anyone else in a position to reward or impact a team member).
      No matter how much paintball or rock climbing the team participates in, team spirit will be inevitably and inexorably destroyed by these things.
      Equally, the temperaments and attitudes of team members will have an impact. There are often naturally likeable members of the team, quiet members of the team, loud and obnoxious members of the team ... etc etc. The role that each one plays in the team activities and contributes to team spirit should be carefully monitored, and moderated, by the team leader.
      Sometimes team members can be turned obnoxious by the continuing failure of the team (usually represented in this case by the team leader) to recognise, acknowledge and implement good ideas coming from the team member. Especially when those ideas are ultimately expressed by a 'favoured one' and implemented, to the applause of other team members, and the team leader. This brings about a frustrated and angry reaction that causes huge problems, both for the specific team member, and the rest of the team).
      So ... what is the best way to build team spirit? Easy ... have good, fair, encouraging and inclusive leadership that can also recognise, acknowledge and act upon intransigently disruptive members of the team. Then the team can go an have paintball fights, cook dinner, bring curries etc etc, and everyone will have fun, and cement team cohesion and spirit ... these will not be able to build team cohesion and spirit if the team is already divided, angry, resentful etc. because of the failures of management. The old saying that 'A fish rots from its head' holds very true here.
      I have always remembered some famous words from my study of history (British and Australian history :) The court-martial of Lt William Bligh, one-time infamous captain of the Bounty, against whom his crew mutinied, and one time Governor of New South Wales, against whom the corrupt but powerful 'Rum Corps' mutinied ... to (nearly quote) "He was an officer of great ability and courage who had one major failing ... he played favourites'.
      Roy Morien

      To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
      From: hoshposh@...
      Date: Sat, 4 Aug 2007 10:13:34 -0400
      Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Team building activities

      Nothing builds up the bond after shooting and getting shot in an almost harmless way.  Plus, you are not on your own, some of the people are on your team in the paintball game. :)


      On 8/3/07, Stephen Bobick <sbobick2@gmail. com> wrote:

      I never understood painball as a team-building activity... stalk/shoot your coworkers...

      On 8/3/07, Andrew Badera < andrew@badera. us> wrote:
      Fun, non-work-related competitions between teams. Paintball. Scavenger hunts. "Biggest loser" type contests. Go-karts.

      On 8/3/07, Robin Dymond <robin.dymond@ gmail.com> wrote:

      Hi everyone,
      I realize true teams come from the time it takes to become a team while doing the work. However I have a couple new teams and want to do some activities with them that will create a shared experience, require reliance on each other, be enjoyable/fun.
      Any suggestions besides team drinking games and the 59 minute scrum? :)
      Robin Dymond.

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